Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Sadie Time

I am only going to give a brief summery of what has been happening to the two of us, as I will be letting Elisa fill in a lot of the details. I am doing this for three reasons. First, (my own selfish reason), because I love reading her writing. It always makes me feel better. Secondly, a lot of what has been happening has to do with her and she is the best person to share those thoughts and feelings. And lastly, but by no means least, I want to keep ya’ll up to date on the most important part of our lives – Sadie.

So quickly us….
It has been a fairly crummy week health wise. The Sunday before last I had to go to the Urgent care center due to having a fever (they make you go if you have a fever over 100.4  -mine was 101.3). Of course this happens in the middle of the night. So off to the hospital I went at 11:45 pm. Thankfully, our good friend Caroline was staying with us and was able to take me to the hospital. Our hope was that Elisa would be able to get some sleep as well as Sadie. This has been one of the tough spots with both of us having cancer. We have had to decide that it is healthier for us if we try to not go to each other’s appointments. Otherwise, we would never get any rest. But, of course, our hearts are not so fond of this idea. Anyway, Elisa of course didn’t sleep because she was worried. Finally I received the all clear at 4:30am -just one of those fevers that can’t be figured out. This is what led to the onset of the soar throat and cold that just won’t leave Elisa alone. She has been coughing pretty much none stop for the past week. Otherwise, things have been pretty much run of the mill cancer patient around here. Shaving heads, forcing food down, not sleeping, getting chemo, you know, the usual suspects. But again, Elisa will be putting her wonderful humor to all this once she kicks this cold.


Warning: Father gushing over child ahead!

So on to the amazing Sadie. The Sadie that clearly has been working on her bachelors of engineering while at daycare. One night last week (from her crib) she used her crazy strong, long arms to grab items from a near by table to build a rudimentary ladder and climbed out of her crib! That is right, Houdini is back! So we have had to change her crib to a “big girl” bed. She loves this! However I can’t help but think that this is just step one in some grand master plan she has been plotting. Time to hide those keys to the car! Good thing she is still a couple of weeks away from being able to turn the doorknobs! She is also starting to say every word that she hears. For those of you that live in New York, heck, even if you have driven through New York, you will know that this means your kid is going to hear some interesting (colorful) words. Like (as Sadie says) “’Oly Shh”.  Good thing she can’t read this blog yet! She is also starting to string those words together. My favorite paring so far, of course, has to be “Daddy do”. Yesterday morning she woke up and said, “Where are you Bunny”, - Bunny being her new stuffed animal companion (poor monkey…his heart broken). Ahh, the first in a long line of heart broken men I fear.
She is also quickly developing a strong sense of self. She is playing with her toys on her own for longer periods of time and carrying on little conversations too. I can’t wait until they actually contain words I can understand so I can listen in on her amazing thoughts!
She also knows what she does not want, and knows how to tell you. Last night Elisa and I were giving her a bath. Typically she loves this and even helps to wash herself. However, last night she was not into having her hair washed. When I started to lather the shampoo she absent-mindedly began to say “No”, but continued to play without looking up. As soon as she realized that this was not deterring me from washing her hair, she looked up, furrowed her eyebrows, pursed her lips, stared me square in the eye, and with perfect enunciation, yelled “NO!” Sorry Sadie, we didn’t mean to gloss over your wishes, but Elisa and I busted out laughing. It was the cutest face anyone has ever yelled at me with!
It is so amazing to watch her make connections between things too. When we first cut Elisa’s hair, we wanted to make sure she was there to watch so that it wouldn’t be a shock to her. It may have helped that my hair is already short, because she didn’t even seem to notice. We put Elisa’s hair into several ponytails so that they would stay long enough to be able to donate them later to Locks of Love. We laid them out for the night on the dinning room table to be packed up later. The next day we looked at the photographs that our dear friend Betsy had taken of the haircutting event. She had posted them online, so Elisa, her mom, Eileen, Sadie and I were all sitting at the table looking the pictures on our laptop. Betsy had created a beautiful slide show and put music to it, so it was very moving to see the images, and Elisa started to cry a little (me too). Sadie looked over at her (she was sitting between us in Eileen’s lap) and saw that she was crying. She reached out and placed her hand on Elisa’s shoulder in what could only be interpreted as a consoling manner. This, of course, did not help me stop crying. Next she points to the ponytails that are lying just beyond the computer and says “Mama?” 
She leans forward and tries to grab one. So I hand her one to hold. She lifts it up and says “Mama” again as she tries to put it back on Elisa’s head (the right direction I might proudly point out). If I ever thought that she was not aware of what was going on around the house these days, that thought is gone. That moment, with its mix of sadness, astonishment, pride and joy will be one that I hang on to for a long time. It makes me happy that my little girl has such a sensitive intuition, and yet sad that she is having to feel all these different, and sometimes heavy emotions in our home. It inspires me in a big way too. It inspires me to overcome the little bumps that we face each week. I see my wife’s strength and love in her, and this gives me strength. So thank you Sadie. You make your Daddy stronger, and very proud.
I also wanted to say thank you again to our family and friends: Matt, who flew over from San Francisco, Kristen who flew in from Dallas, Caroline who flew in from Oregon, Dala who flew up from North Carolina, Aunt Vikii who flew in from St. Maarten, and ‘Uelita and Miana who are always filling in the gaps and help to take care of us. We love you guys! You are all so incredible kind and loving… and great caregivers! We miss you already.

51 comments:

  1. So glad to read an update, have been thinking of you guys ever since I found your blog a few weeks ago. Will continue praying for you here in Maryland!!!

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  2. Someone in California prays for you nightly. You are amazing people & Sadie is a love. Stay strong, fight hard and be at peace.

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  3. I'm thinking about you guys and I am happy to hear Sadie is working hard on her bachelors in preschool, lol.

    Keep getting well and kicking cancers ass.

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  4. More than one someone is praying for you every night in California. I've been following all your "press" so as not to be intrusive and keep calling Eileen and Donna. Our hearts are with you every step of the way. I moved to San Diego to be near my grandson, who will be ONE next week...just where does time go? I spend all my time with him, in constant wonder and awe. What a miracle a new life is...watching him learn and feel...WOW! Yes, I do believe in miracles... big ones and little ones. Revel in that miracle that is Sadie...and more will come.
    And, Nathan, you are also a wonderful writer!
    Much love and light, Rose Ann Scamardella

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  5. Thank you for the update. I read your story this morning in the NY Times and it truly touched my heart. I have a very close friend who is only 27 and has been diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer- I told her to also tune in to the blog. The love, faith, and courage you and Elisa have is absolutely amazing! Sending prayers your way from NJ. Keep fighting and writing!! :)

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  6. Praying for you all now every day. I can't stop thinking about y'all and what you must be going through. Thank you for your blog. I will continue to follow it...

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  7. I check this site about 50 times a day to see if there's an update, and I'm SO glad there was one from you today! I've been following news articles, Today-show interviews, etc. BUT nothing moves me more than your candid depiction of your life together. Keep writing, we all (globally) support and love your family endlessly!

    xo Faye (from Edgewater, NJ)

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  8. Kids are amazing! After we learned of my husbands diagnosis and before we knew all the details, I let my mind get the best of me. I was sitting on the living room floor playing with my girls (2 and 6 months). I started crying. My oldest walked over to me and wrapped her tiny arms around me and said, 'it's ok mommy.' Children are they best medicine!

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  9. Inspiring is one of the many words I can think of to describe how I feel about this Bond family. Thanks for letting complete strangers in on your life. I pray for your family each night. Lots of love and faith from Utah.

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  10. I am praying for you and your family. Your strength and courage in such adversity is nothing short of a warrior mentality, and I believe by faith that you and your wife will emerge victorious. May God bless your sweet daughter and may you continue to be surrounded by loved ones who will help you through this challenging time.

    Prayers from Bend, Oregon.

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  11. strong positive prayers for your family. I love the little Sadie stories!

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  12. Ah, thank you for sharing Sadie with us. My own boys are adults now and I so miss having a little one around. Reading your post brings back so many happy memories of my boys and the times we spent when they were small.

    I wish for both of you the same joy of seeing your little sweetheart as an adult. Sending you love, strength, and hope.

    Connie

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  13. Prayers and healing thoughts coming to you from Connecticut too... I have a blog friend who was just diagnosed with stage 4 breast cancer and has two young boys to raise. She is a beautiful soul, as are the two of you. I am going to direct her to your blog so that she knows clearly that she is not alone. You both speak so beautifully of the joys of life, even during this difficult time. She does the same and I think you should know each other.

    Thinking of you daily and finding inspiration in your courage and love for each other -

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  14. sweet sadie, she is truly a blessing. may her smiles and laughter carry you through even the darkest of times.
    i'm not usually the praying sort, but i believe in loving blessings. sending lots of those from our little corner of bay ridge to yours.

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  15. Someone from Tennessee is thinking and praying for your family. Ever since I heard your story you have been on my mind. :)

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  16. I am touched by the strenth of both of you.
    I am depressive in nature, and after hearing your story, I realize we must accept the path our lives take, no matter how hard it is. I know something good will come out of this. One day you will get that call that they have found a cure for your type of cancer. Until then stay as strong as you are and don't give up. Just a note, did you guys try any other hospitals that specialize in your type of cancers, or any experimental treatments??
    Much Love, Anna from NJ

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  17. So I just finished my first treatment for stage IV breast cancer, and am in tears for how much crappier it is for you... I truly can't imagine having both of you sick and battling at the same time, while taking care of a young daughter. Your authentic nature in sharing is what will continue to draw people in and I am just going to pray for you every day and join all the others so that some sort of force shield surrounds you!

    Love and hugs! Vicky

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  18. I just came across the NYT article and followed you guys over here(blog). My heart goes out to you both and I will continue to read your post.
    I will pray for you all and hope all gets better in due time.
    Keep faith.

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  19. LOVED the post, thanks Nathan! Hugs all around the Bond household! Judith

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  20. My heart cracked into a million pieces after reading your story in the NYT.
    You both have a wonderful attitude and that is great.
    Please know that I think about and pray for you constantly every since I read your article.
    Prayers and lots of wonderful thoughts from FL.

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  21. I sent you some money to help. My son had cancer in his 30s so I understand -- I truly do. Take it a day at a time, lean on your family and friends, laugh and love. We are sending you strength, support, understanding and general good karma from Atlanta.

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  22. God bless you and your family. It is amazing to witness your grace under fire from a distance. You have a lot of people, including me, sending you good vibes!

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  23. I have prayed for you daily since I first found your blog. and will continue to pray for you both. May God uphold you , strengthen you and encourage you both this very day.

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  24. Hello, this is a class writing to you from Southern California, we would like to tell your family we are very sorry to hear about your cancer. Never give up, it is nice that both of you are caring so well for your daughter. We wish that you both will feel better soon. Your daughter is so young and we know you want your daughter to finish high school and college. Our class hopes that everything goes right for your family. We want both of you to feel better soon. Your daughter is so beautiful.
    Love from So Cal

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  25. Hello,I am from Portugal, and i have been reeading about you story, i want to let you know that my heart is with your family, hopping the best for you!!
    I'm sure that this is just one part of the story and soon will be just something to remember!!
    Good bless you!!
    ( i´m sorry if i made some mistakes writting....)

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  26. Someone in Alaska is praying for you, sending positive thoughts and prayers your way. Sadie sounds like an amazing, smart little girl!

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  27. Thank you for the update. I'm sorry that Elisa is feeling crummy. I pray for you every day.

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  28. I saw your story online from the Good Morning America segment. I just read your entire blog. I am so sorry you are all going through this, but I am amazed at your strength and courage. I am so happy to see that you have many family and friends helping you out. Sadie is very lucky to have such wonderful parents. I wish you all the love and luck in the world. :)

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  29. You are going through such challenging times.. with good humor and level-headedness. I hope this will be over for you soon.

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  30. I, too, have stage 4 breast cancer and love Dr. Volm!! I will be looking for you at the cancer center.
    Stay strong.

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  31. Sadie is so smart! Making a ladder to climb out of her crib. My daughter does the same thing, only it's to climb onto the dining room table when I'm not looking. I don't know where they come up with stuff like that but it's funny.

    Your story is truly inspiring and makes me want to cry, but I can't help but feel happy for you. Reading your post, as emotional as it is, and seeing how lighthearted you are despite your physical battles is really worth admiring. Two people with so much love can make it through anything and I will certainly pray that's exactly the plan God has for your beautiful family.

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  32. Thank you for sharing your lives with us! You are truly an inspiration for so many people! It is wonderful to hear about Sadie's adventures as well. Please know that although we have never met,your family remains close in heart, mind and prayer each day! Keep the faith and may God continue to bless all of your tomorrows!!!
    Liana (Brooklyn)

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  33. Found your story online and it's been on my heart all day. I'm going to continue to check in and pray for you guys. You should check out my friend Libby's blog. She was diagnosed with lymphoma in August and is now thankfully cancer-free. She has some great words of wisdom that I hope will encourage you both in this crazy time.

    http://libbyryder.blogspot.com

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  34. Thank you for sharing your family moments. Your courage and determination is inspiring. Receive our prayers and well wishes from Plano, Tx.

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  35. So cute! Hope Monkey's heart heals soon! LOL! thinking of you all
    xxx

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  36. This is Nary, Bobbi, and Val we're all from the Nursing Assistand class and we had to do an article and one of my friends done one of you guys we read it. That is so sad we are so sorry to hear. You guys def. have our prayers this is so sad... and your daughter is absolutly beautiful. Bless you guys... We are all following all your blog post.

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  37. Ten years ago I was told I would be dead in at most ten years, from a rare bone marrow condition. Today I am medication free for the first time in ten years, and I feel better than ever. There is no explanation, and I am content with that, not everything is explainable. So miracles do happen, I am proof, and doctors don't know everything. God bless you all, the future is unknown, so anything can happen!

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  38. Wow. Wow. Wow. You are so loved. And your darling baby girl is going to have this experience mold her in ways we cannot predict. She will be amazing for it. It will be a site to behold. I can hardly wait. Much love…

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  39. I hope you get strength from knowing how many people are following your story, praying for you, empathizing, sympathizing. I am one more in Toronto, Canada, who wishes you and your family the healing you deserve.

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  40. I have been so touched by your story that I think of you guys every day. Right now I sit at work with tears in my eyes admiring, how Nathan can beautifully write about his baby girl.
    I wish you all the best and pray that God send healing to both of you.
    Love
    Martina from Brooklyn

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  41. Just one more comment to say that I am touched by your lives and pray (to who? God?) that y'all become healthy again. So glad that you have such a great support system there in NY. Imagine all of the folks in the world that don't. Yeah, like that makes you feel any better right now but I'm really glad that you do have it. Praying that you have a nice evening with less pain and some great sleep.
    Brandon Hollon, Austin, TX.

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  42. Nathan, reading your dx and what you are going through was like reading my life. I was dx with stage 3 rectal cancer at 37yr May of 2010. What really got to me was reading how you said it hurts to cry and the chemo did that to me too and I hated that. Nathan, I also did the treatment plan you are doing--first the folfox (big chemo is what I call it) and then more chemo 24/7 pump with radiation for 6 wks. I hope it keeps me ok. I will be praying for you to get through this, it is so fresh in my mind how hard it is. Elisa my heart just breaks for you as a mom I know all those horrible thoughts that come with this dx. I pray God saves you both. I see you wrote how your blog must be the "worst" but mine is the most downer unhelpful since I just let it pour out and it is not pretty but is real as I can be right now. It has been much help for me to read other blogs and know I am not alone in this stupid cancer and the feelings I am feeling are not weird. You all will be in my prayers. Nathan I would recommend www.colonclub.com great online support from others with colorectal cancers and here is my blog about my rectal cancer
    http://cancercaughtme.blogspot.com/

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  43. You both are so brave...and Sadie will have lovely memories of time with her parents. Can you let her keep one of the ponytails? I remember my great grandmothers braid...never knew her but all of us used to pin her braid in our hair now and then. Sadie may find comfort in having that braid in her dresser drawer when she's older. Our family just lost my dear uncle. He was 63...liver cancer and leukemia caused by Vietnam exposure to Agent Orange. He battled 3 years...he will be missed. Stay strong...there are many many prayers for your family.

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  44. I have been reading your blog for about 3 weeks. You both, along with Sadie have been in my thoughts and prayers. I can't imagine what you guys are going though, may you continue to find strength in Sadie and ultimate trust in God. TRUST JESUS Christ for your complete healing. For by his stripes we ARE healed...I am believing this for your family! Isaiah 53:4&5. God bless you and heal you in Jesus name.

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  45. Hugs coming to you from Indiana. Our church is having a 24-hour-prayer vigil this weekend. I wrote your names on a prayer card and many people you don't know will be asking God to watch over you, heal you and give you peace.

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  46. A reader from AZ. Praying for you all. Elisa has your doctor ever mentioned the BRCA gene? Young breast cancer can (obviously not always) be connected to the hereditary gene mutation. Just thought I would put it out there. I have this gene mutation and saw my mom battle breast cancer 3 times and then ovarian cancer. Wishing you weren't both dealing with so so much.

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  47. Love and strength from New Zealand...Kia Kaha you two...may you be kept strong, may you be helped to be strong...

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  48. I'm a reader from Malaysia, and sending love and light your way. Your strength and courage is inspiring and heartbreaking at the same time. Thoughts are with you, Elisa and your beautiful Sadie. Please stay strong.

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  49. Prayers are coming your way from Tennessee. God Bless & be with your family always.

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  50. I recently heard about your story and I was at a loss for words. Trying to read through your posts was difficult through my tears. I can't believe what you are both are going through. My prayers and thoughts are with you and I pray a miracle comes soon.

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  51. I realize this may come too late, and the last thing I want to do is make you regret a choice already made, but in case I am not too late, and in the hopes that the word will be spread going forward...

    I encourage anyone who is considering donating hair to Locks of Love, with the intention that the hair be used for kids with cancer, to read this post first:

    http://freeanissa.com/2011/03/reposted-from-hope4peyton-locks-of-love-you-disappoint-me-greatly/

    And then to consider another one of the organizations mentioned in that post.

    If Elisa's hair has already been donated to Locks of Love, then the upside is that kids with alopecia need wigs too.

    Sending you all the strength I can muster. xo.

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